IF you plan on doing any gaming away from mains power, you need a decent battery.
Yes, there’s a battery in your device, but when that runs out, then what? Talking to other people? Looking at trees? You didn’t bring a phone, tablet or portable gaming device with you to do those things! No, you need another battery. A big one, which can recharge your device more than once, just in case power points are inconveniently absent from wherever you’ve found yourself.
And if you’re out away from civilisation, it stands to reason you might need some other accessories too. Like a torch, or something to reinflate flat tyres, or jump start your car if you’ve done something silly like drained the battery by running high-drain devices while the engine isn’t on.
It also happens there’s a product that does all that, and it’s very worthwhile indeed as a result.
The Mophie Powerstation Go Rugged With Air Compressor is a combination 55,500mWh powerpack, air compressor, vehicle jumpstarter and worklight – and is well placed to keep you gaming away from civilisation as a result.
The unit measures 11.8cm x 24.2cm x 4.7cm and weighs 1.1kg; it’s not a small unit but packs a lot in.
The most obvious use for something like this is on a camping holiday with the family (or by yourself), especially since it covers a lot of bases.
As a powerbank, the Powerstation Go Rugged with Air Compressor outputs at 5V, 2.4 Amps – which is more than suitable for charge mobile phones, tablets and smart devices, alongside things like smartwatches too.
Critically, it can charge a Nintendo Switch – it takes a while, but a full charge of the Switch uses 58% of the Powerstation Go Rugged’s available juice.
However, the unit isn’t enough to charge a laptop, so if your battery goes flat in the middle of a multiplayer gaming match, you’re on your own (Side question: How are you somewhere with decent mobile internet for gaming, but not access to a power point?)
The worklight with it is very bright – you’d have no trouble updating a TTRPG character sheet via its illumination – and the compressor aspect is surprisingly useful too. It’s rated to 100psi can easily inflate bike, car or 4WD tyres as well as things like air mattresses and beach balls too.
The compressor is not fast or quiet, though – it took 7 minutes to inflate a friend’s ATV tyre from 6psi to 32psi, and used 15% of the battery in the process, and it was noisy too. Still, it can get you back on the road (or inflate something to lie on while you game on your break) and that’s what counts.
Finally, you can also use it to literally jumpstart a car – it’s rated for 12v 600 amps, which is enough for a car or ute. Mophie claim it can jump-start a full-sized truck, but I suspect that may be truck in the American sense (ie referring to something like a Ford F-150) rather than indicating you could get a B-Double going again after accidentally leaving the headlights on all night while it was parked. The instructions are printed on the included carry and are very straightforward and easy to understand.
Strangely, while the Rugged Powerstration Go With Air Compressor has a USB-C input port, it does not have USB-C output (There are 2x USB-A 2.1 ports instead) – meaning you’ll need to buy an different cable or an adaptor if you want to charge anything which uses USB-C. It’s not the end of the world, but it is an odd design choice and one of the few aspects of the device I was disappointed by.
The LED display bright and easy to read and understand, but I noticed it got scuffed and scratched under pretty standard use. It was still readable, but I was surprised it scuffed considering how well made every other part of the device is.
All in all however, I’ve found the Mophie Powerstation Go Rugged with Air Compressor a very, very useful addition to my car boot. I’ve used it to recharge flat tablets when travelling with the kids, used the torch to look for a Nintendo Switch memory card that had fallen down the side of the seats, and even reinflated a tyre that was looking a bit flat on a drive through regional Queensland one Sunday.
With an RRP of AUD$279 it is money well spent and comes highly recommended for anyone who likes to travel by road with gaming gear or smart devices.